Sacral (S1-S5) Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injury impacts at least one-quarter of a million individuals, with at least eleven thousand new injuries happening every year. Motor vehicle incidents, violence, sports-related injuries trauma, falls, and motor vehicle incidents are typical causes of spinal cord injury. Spinal injuries often leave its victims with enduring complications, which should be coped with for the rest of their lives. One of the four types of spinal cord injuries is sacral spinal cord injury.

The sacrum is the bone located at the end of the spine between the tailbone and the lumbar spine that looks like a triangle. Your sacral spine is composed of five parts from S1 to S5, which impact the nerve communication to the lowermost part of your body.

You must be aware that the spinal cord doesn’t range beyond the lumbar spine. You see, L2 is the lowermost part of your vertebral segment, including the spinal cord. The nerve root then exits each of the other vertebral levels beyond your spinal cord.

The sacral spinal cord injury level impacts your nerve roots.

  • S1 impacts your groin and hip region
  • S2 impacts the back of your thighs
  • S3 impacts your medical buttock region
  • S4 and S5 impacts your perineal region

Remember that the harm to your sacral spine is much less typical compared to other types of spinal cord injuries.

What’s more, the sacral spine is the least likely region for the nerves to be compacted. You will find a few incomplete spinal injuries in this region that are called sacral spraining. Here, the motor function pathways are saved throughout the injury.

Sacral Spinal Cord Injuries Overview

You might discover that there’s no spinal cord in the area of sacral spine. However, the sacral nerves in this area root in your lumbar spine. The injury done to your nerve roots in the lower part of the lumbar spine and into your sacrum might have the same signs to spinal cord injury.

Furthermore, individuals who have this type of injury might have symptoms on one or both parts of their body. Damages to the sacral spine might present you with a sort of function failure in your limbs or hips. You might also be able to drive a vehicle or stroll. A sacral spinal cord injury patient might also leave with no or less bowel or bladder control. Nonetheless, he or she will be able to do his or her own self-care.

Pay attention that the sacral area is home to your pelvic organ’s control center. This includes your sex organ, bowel, or bladder. Thus, sexual function is a major issue, particularly in men who are suffering from sacral spinal nerve injury. The fertility of men might also be influenced by sacral or lumbar nerve injury. On the other hand, for women, their fertility isn’t influenced.

What are common signs of sacral spinal cord injuries?

Individuals who are suffering from this condition might suffer from the following:

  • Sensory concerns in the groin or buttocks region
  • Leg pain that might radiate down the back of the legs
  • Lower back pain
  • Lack of control of bladder or bowels

What are the causes of sacral spinal cord injuries?

Below are the typical causes of sacral spinal cord injuries:

  • Osteoporosis
  • Degeneration
  • Birth defects
  • Falls
  • Trauma
  • Motor vehicle incidents


Existing treatments for sacral spinal cord injuries are listed below:

  • Surgery. A fusion of the vertebrae and surgical decompression are performed to lower pressure around the spinal nerves.
  • Therapy. Physical therapy is performed to support power in the parts influenced by spinal cord injury. Occupational therapy is performed to help patients to understand how to function
  • Drugs. NSAID drugs are utilized in curing lumbar spinal cord injuries. Better results will be achieved if the drugs are initiated right after the injury. It will lower the swellings that surround the spinal cord.

More Details

Injuring your S1 to S5 vertebrae must leave you slightly functional. However, expect to experience some problems controlling the function of your bowel and bladder function. Patients who are suffering from this spinal cord injury normally live average lives. A few ad support might be required for these people; however, the majority does well on their own.

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